Choice is key when it comes to improving osteoarthritis symptoms through exercise, highlights a new study in Clinical Rheumatology.
A total of 69 older people with knee osteoarthritis were split into groups: a supervised community-based or unsupervised walking programme. Six months later, people who expressed a preference, either for the supervised or unsupervised programme, and who were assigned to their preferred choice of programme were more likely to continue with the walking sessions, compared to those who did not obtain their preferred choice of programme.
After nine months, people who had been given the group they wanted had improved levels of stiffness and function compared to those who did not get the group they wanted.
The researchers conclude:
“We show this approach promotes long-term adherence to a community-based walking program, while ensuring the maintenance of clinical benefits of walking, among older adults susceptible to avoid or not properly engage in physical activity.”
In the UK, around 10 million people have arthritis.
Arthritis Research UK are a charity committed to preventing the onset of arthritis, developing a cure for arthritis and transforming the lives of those with arthritis.
This National Arthritis Week, you are asked to share your stories of living with arthritis to help more people get closer to living free from the pain of arthritis.
Arthritis Research are also raising awareness that on the 25th November, the Government will set out its spending plans for the country in the Comprehensive Spending Review. This will decide how much money is spent on everything: from welfare to healthcare, to support for research. They urge you to tell your MP they must fight for a fair deal for people with arthritis during the Spending Review. Register or sign in to email your MP, and give people with arthritis in your community the champion they need.
The fair deal that is being campaigned for is to make arthritis a public health priority, demanding a commitment to protect and increase the amount of money councils receive to maintain the health of local resident. Protecting the welfare benefits for disabled people with arthritis and committing to protect and then increase investment in medical research to support the fight to cure arthritis.
You can lend your support to National Arthritis Week by sharing your story here. Your stories will be used to guide the research Arthritis Research UK fund in 2016.